The former French ambassador to Vanuatu Robby Judes has been detained for questioning over alleged sexual assault in New Caledonia.
This is being reported by media in Noumea where Mr Judes was scheduled to face women who said he sexually assaulted them.
No charges have been laid yet.
According to French radio, the confrontation with the accusers was set to happen at the French High Commission in Noumea.
Mr Judes was recalled to Paris in February after a senior New Caledonian businesswoman Cherifa Linossier made the first allegation.
The foreign ministry sacked him last month but he rejects the allegations, saying there may a plot against him.
Ms Linossier said seven other women reported to her that they were also harassed by him.